College Application Season!

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College Application Season!

Sabrina Yock, Columnist

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Greetings seniors! Now that it is October I’ll bet colleges have started reaching out to you via email or mail to get your attention. But no need to stress, I did that for you already! I have been researching colleges, FAFSA, scholarships, and any other information necessary to make applying to colleges less stressful. Yes, even with help from adults and school; applications, researching, and deadlines still find a way to sneak up on you and make things worse. I have complied a plethora of websites, tricks, and tips to help YOU with your decisions!

By now, you should already have a couple of schools in mind that you want to apply to. If not, it’s okay! A handful of schools have application deadlines that fall on a later date, unless you are applying for early admission, then you are cutting it very short right now. Using websites such as CollegeBoard and Petersons are great for finding a school. All you need to put into the site is the location(s) on where you would like to attend school and what you would like to major in. There are also other options where you can choose the type of campus you prefer, the size of the school, and other nitty-gritty details. Of course there are other factors that fall into finding the right college for you such as tuition, location, your major, and your campus preference.

After you have found a couple of colleges that catch your attention, it’s good to do some extra research on them. You may like one thing about it, but there could be a couple of things that you don’t necessarily like. Food and dorming are huge things that you should consider when doing your researching. Everyone likes a nice and cozy place to sleep at night, why suffer if it’s not for your liking? Especially if you’re going to be spending a lot of time in your room for studying and hanging out with your new friends! Now with food, of course you want to good eat. You’re probably going to be away from home. Your mom won’t be making you food or telling you what or when to eat, it’s all up to you now. So the school’s cafeteria is a great factor, you don’t want to starve or get malnutrition. You couple easily become ill and it could mess with your studies.

Okay, now we are going to get into even more important details. Filing your FAFSA. This is a major step/choice to make before you actually begin applying to schools. I suggest beginning the application with your parents/guardian. There are multiple sections where you need to enter you or your guardians social security number. Then you will definitely need someone with you to fill out the income and tax return information. You think you may know some answers, but not all. So definitely grab an adult in your household to help you, you don’t want to put the wrong information in and risk rejection. Once the application is completed and you submit, it should only take a day or two for your report to come back. For me, it took two days and I was all set!

Finally, your report is complete, it’s time for you to fill out your Common Application on the common app website. The site is pretty self explanatory. It’s going to ask you to pick all of the colleges that you’re going to apply to. After on the common app tab, you are going to answer simple questions such as your information, family, education, test scores, and extracurricular activities. Then the last box will be asked you to write a 250-650 word essay on one of the topics given to you. It is very simple, just take your time and ask a friend or even a teacher if they could edit it for you after. In my opinion, the better the essay is, the less stressed you will feel. Still focusing on the common application, you’re going to go on the sites mycolleges tab and begin filling out the basic information that they ask. Usually this is for the college itself. The basic questions asked are going to be what you are or aren’t doing. For example, if you’re using any waivers, which school/major you intend, and background info on you with the school. Then you could quickly add your already written essay in the checkbox then submit! Very simple and no need to stress here.

Basically the last step to getting into college is finally applying! Once again, this step is for the most part self-explanatory. With prior knowledge and guided help from the application, you should be all set! They will ask you for your SAT/ACT scores, high school transcript ( you could get from your guidance counselor), at least two letters of recommendation, and your essay. All other information was already filled out and submitted via Common App and FAFSA.  However, some application may ask you for it as well!

It is finally time for you to begin your search or your application. This article was written purely on my experience and other online information I read when I was filling my FAFSA and Common App. If you have any other questions on information that I did not covered about in this article, then you should reach out to your guidance counselor or even google search your question(s). There are many reliable sources online that are quick and easy for you! Good luck with your applications and I hope that you get into the school of your choice!

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